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UC highlights Higher Education concentration in CECH

Higher Education concentration proves beneficial for staff and faculty

Dr. Everrett Smith

Thanks to the new  Higher Education Leadership graduate certificate offered through the College of Education at the University of Cincinnati, students now have the opportunity to take advantage of a post-secondary education graduate option at UC.

In understanding the great need and responding to the demands of this discipline Assistant Professor Everrett Smith and Professor and Assistant Provost Robin Martin set about fashioning a curriculum.

After experiencing early success with the graduate certificate in Higher Education Leadership, Smith created the Higher Education Administration concentration within the Master of Art in Educational Studies program.

The new concentration was created in hopes to increase enrollment in the master’s program, as it would provide more options to students. And it enrolled nearly 20 students in its first academic year.

Without a designated marketing budget, faculty created flyers, sent emails, made phone calls, and promoted the program across campus to different offices and divisions with hopes of increasing enrollment rates. In addition, the program has also been promoted to nearby colleges and universities. 

The program graduated its first group of students in the summer of 2019, and almost doubled in size by the beginning of fall 2019. Students have the option to choose online, face-to-face or hybrid instruction when enrolling in classes each term.

One of the many benefits of this program, as a student, is learning about taken for granted aspects of higher education from the experts. The community we have in this program--between students and faculty-is special.

Dr. Antar Tichavakunda

Dr. Antar Tichavakunda, assistant professor of educational leadership

Headshot of assistant professor of educational leadership, Dr. Antar Tichavakunda.

The Higher Education Administration concentration teaches students the overall infrastructure of higher educational systems. Students walk away with an understanding of the roles and responsibilities of senior leadership within a collegiate setting such as the role of the president, provost, deans and directors. 

Within the concentration, students review and learn about college budgets, policy from a macro and micro perspective within federal and state level, tuition setting, fundraising, philanthropy, and even a deep historical lens of how higher education was organized.

Students also learn about European and German models of higher education, along with interesting and fun facts such as how students used to pay for tuition through the exchange of crops, sheep and other unique sources of revenue, said Smith.

Things you’re going to learn in our program are how we operate, how we generate revenue, and how we serve students particularly in an urban environment.

Dr. Everrett Smith

Students will be able to use their master's project in job interviews to demonstrate direct project management experience in higher education. This program is advantageous for students who wants to pursue a career in the higher education industry, but especially full-time students who have less professional work experience than those who are part-time.

Part-time students who are typically full-time employees can use this project to exemplify how they can execute and develop thoughtful projects in their areas of interest as a student.

Students who graduate with the graduate certificate or the concentration within the Master of Educational Studies program might pursue positions such as career advisors, assistant director of admissions, assistant vice provost, vice president, etc.

Advancing your knowledge in higher education provides students with an increasing amount of career possibilities. Ultimately, this program gives foundational knowledge in postsecondary education, sightlines to potential career paths and helps students increase their networks.

Kayla Johnson

Many faculty members are currently enrolled in higher education courses to help further their knowledge and move forward with their career.

Employees who work at UC not only have the opportunity to benefit from using tuition remission, but they also have an advantage of learning potential career outcomes. Learning potential career outcomes may include exploring the various roles and titles available at the university.

The master’s degree was designed for individuals who do not possess a master's degree in another discipline but have a desire to pursue a long-term career in higher education. The higher education leadership graduate certificate provides a foundational knowledge for those who have a master’s degree or several years of higher education experience. 

The overall goal of the program is to support and graduate successful leaders, educators, and/or policymakers, all while encouraging them to embody the principles of social justice, caring, diversity, and collaboration in their practices.

Classes will be offered online fall of 2020 as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Interested students who would like to learn more can request information from the college's graduate enrollment advisor.

Join the college at 6 p.m., Thursday, June 11, for a live webinar to learn about these programs.